Proud of Myself

Proud Special Proud Special That’s Me

Do you know the last time you felt proud of yourself?

Isn’t that an interesting question? What did you hear inside when you read that? Did it feel like an appropriate question? Did you flinch a little, think it’s an unseemly idea, self-pride?

I feel like in adult life it is used more in a negative sense, like, “Are you proud of yourself now?” Said with scorn, over the steaming pile of argument aftermath. Whereas for my son, I use it as the highest compliment, usually with tears in my eyes. “Aren’t you proud of yourself, Zack? YOU did that, YOU did,” for his first report card ever (yes, ever) with no negative points or comments on his behavior and (lack of) self-control.

But I am feeling proud of myself, at the ripe young age of 44, and I am going to claim it.

December 9 I was drowning in pain. And it so was not pretty. So deeply unpretty that I hate to put it all down here, so I could stare at it directly, measure its sprawling size and strength, like mapping a hurricane. Storm Stacy, registering as a 5.

And now, not even two months later, I am free. By my own hand. A blizzard is bearing down on my city, but I am calm. And proud.

Everything I learned in the aftermath of my divorce was tested. Everything I so painstakingly wrote down and recorded, in 100,000 much-considered words, was thrown into fresh doubt. Aside from being devastated, I felt like a failure. I could not live the very truths I had codified, the very truths I believe to my core.

Except, I did.

But this time around I had to learn that even hard-earned wisdom can’t protect me from life’s pain.

Of course!

But I paid attention, I stayed open to Derek (when I so desperately didn’t want to), I kept asking questions, questions without angles, I listened to the answers. And once again, I learned what I needed to set myself free. I ransacked the kitchen drawer of our shared memories and experiences as individuals in a couple, in front of him, and with him, and then at one point, enough junk moved out of the way, Derek was able to reach in and hand me the key.

The key is my aha, my “secret,” a connection to a truth about myself I had never before seen, that I’m still turning over in my mind, slowly attaching to words.

And all that will continue to unfold, leading me toward the peace in the center of my being.

But for now I am calm, and proud. And so happy to be a human who keeps learning.

 

 

 

About stacy

I am a writer, author, mother, longtime magazine editor (20 years in the business, 6 as editor in chief of Redbook), optimist, and, above all, a searcher. Right now, I'm searching for whom I'm really meant to be, after living through a series of very jarring changes that bumped me out of the life I was living: a son, then a divorce, a cataclysimcally messed-up house, which led to a book (Falling Apart In One Piece), and then, one week after that book came out, my parents both fell gravely ill, I resigned from my job (and maybe my career), my son got very scared and then, later, was diagnosed with an anxiety/ADHD disorder, my parents died, and at the same time, my boyfriend moved in with my son and me and we started the long and very painful journey of realizing we couldn't make our relationship work (that story unfolds on this blog). Since then I've been trying to figure out what's next. Or, in other words, how to fill in the blanks.
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15 Responses to Proud of Myself

  1. Lindsey says:

    Proud, free, and SUCH AN INSPIRATION. Thank God for you. I mean that, seriously. xoxo

    • stacy says:

      I can’t imagine what’s inspiring. Sometimes it’s all so ugly. But I know you have a thing for the TRUTH, so I guess I’ll chalk it up to that. xoxo

  2. Jen says:

    Good for you! I felt your peace as I read this.

  3. Rita says:

    I’m intrigued…

    • stacy says:

      In time I will tell. Right now it would still take me about 48 paragraphs to explain, and I don’t think even *I* could remain interested that long! ; )

  4. Alexandra says:

    I’m like you.

    And I love that about you, always open, wide eyed, considering possibilities–realizing we dont’ know everything.

    Curious, accepting, this is you:

    One of the many things obvious when someone looks into your eyes.

    xo

    • stacy says:

      I’ll never make my peace with not knowing everything, but I think I do a pretty good job of faking it some days. : ) I love the way you see me, Alexandra. Please know I hold your soul and spirit in great regard, as well.

  5. Also intrigued…

    Proud of oneself is hard. When you set the bar high, too often even if you get there, you reset it… higher.

    • stacy says:

      I’m not going to play that game anymore. I’ve found myself lately thinking to myself “I’ve got nothing to prove.” To myself or to others. Sure, I want to do well at work and etc. But I feel the pressure lightening. Wishing same for you, in different ways. xo

  6. Glassfull says:

    I love this. Was proud of myself this week for risks taken and a job well done. Proud of you too.

  7. teamgloria says:

    Stacy

    As someone wise said “at least we’re not all cRAzY on the same day ;)

    Because today, you’re not. And so you had the generosity of spirit to send conform our way. And that is brilliant.

    Over here chez teamgloria, we are Most definitely Proud of you and your journey.

  8. teamgloria says:

    we didn’t follow the rules (such as they are – we know your blog is Huge and it’s meant for smaller ones) but we’d love your responses to our Questions here (scroll down): http://teamgloria.com/2013/02/21/at-the-request-of-dear-aubrey/

  9. Beth says:

    Stacy,
    Did you take down yesterdays post?? I found it to be so refreshing and honest! I wanted to respond? I completely agree with everything you said. If you did take it down, please repost it. It absolutely reflected who you are…..an extremely open, honest, brave woman.

    Beth

    • stacy says:

      Beth, you are so kind, both to ask for my post and to say nice things about me. : ) I did take it down, for a handful of reasons, though I did also really love the post and want to have a conversation about the topic with all of you! I will reframe and repost in a short while. Thank you!!

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